MMA is a sport where absolutely anything can happen and at UFC 199 that theory was proven right once again. After 10 years in the UFC and after taking the fight on 2-weeks notice, Michael “The Count” Bisping knocked out Luke Rockhold to claim the UFC’s middleweight championship. The knockout capped off a rather entertaining event that was held at the Forum in Los Angeles on Saturday night.
Rockhold was originally scheduled to defend his title in a rematch against Chris Weidman. With just about two weeks before the event, Weidman had to pull out of the bout due to a lingering neck injury. The UFC quickly replaced the former middleweight champion with Michael Bisping. Few gave Bisping a really chance at winning the bout due to his past performances in big time bouts and that he also had a submission lost to Rochold on his record. But as they say, that is why you play the game because you never know what could happen.
Rockhold was ever confident leading up to the fight and the confidence showed during the opening moments of the bout. Rockhold controlled the center of the octagon and landed leg kicks to Bisping’s body. After a hard leg kick landed and Bisping showed the effects of the kick, an already confident Rockhold went in to land a few punches. The champion had his hands dangerously low. As Rockhold went in for a right jab, Bisping countered with left hook that sent Rockhold to his knees. The champion quickly got back up but only have Bisping waiting for him with another left that sent Rockhold flying back to the fence. After a few follow-up punches, the champion went limp at the bout was stopped. Bisping only needed three and a half minutes to claim the championship that had alluded him for so many years.
The night’s co-main event saw the culmination of a 10 year-long rivalry between bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber. The pair first met back in the WEC. Faber was featherweight champion at the time and had close to 20 professional fights where Cruz had under 10 at the time of the meeting. Faber easily defeated Cruz in about 90-seconds with a guillotine choke. The two would meet four years later, this time in the UFC and this time it was for Cruz’ bantamweight championship. It was a closely contested technical bout but Cruz’ elusiveness proved to be too much for Faber as the champion would retain the bout. Five years would pass before the two would meet again but unfortunately for Faber the outcome would be the same as it was in 2011.
At UFC 199 Cruz would use his elusive style and worked awkward angles to avoid any of Faber’s offense. Cruz takes pride in the fact that he is the less hit fighter in the UFC and he showed why once again on Saturday as Faber spent much of the fight chasing him in hopes of landing anything he could. Cruz came close to finishing the fight in the second and fourth rounds. He dropped Faber in the second round with a straight right but Faber was still fresh enough and escaped any real danger. The fight came closer to a finish in the forth when Cruz sent Faber down to the canvas again. Cruz pounced but Faber was able to cover up and get back to his feet. The judges gave the fight to Cruz as he defeated Faber via a unanimous decision.
Below are the full results from UFC 199.
MAIN CARD RESULTS:
- Middleweight Championship: Michael Bisping def. Luke Rockhold via knockout in Round 1 at 3:36
- Bantamweight Championship: Dominick Cruz def. Urijah Faber via unanimous decision
- Max Holloway def. Ricardo Lamas via unanimous decision
- Dan Henderson def. Hector Lombard via knockout in Round 2 at 1:27
- Dustin Poirier def. Bobby Green via knockout in Round 1 at 2:53
PRELIMINARY CARD RESULTS:
- Brian Ortega def. Clay Guida via TKO Round 3 at 4:40
- Beneil Dariush def. James Vick via knockout in Round 1 at 4:16
- Jessica Andrade def. Jessica Penne via TKO in Round 2 at 2:56
- Alex Caceres def. Cole Miller via unanimous decision
- Sean Strickland def. Tom Breese via split decision
- Luis Henrique da Silva def. Jonathan Wilson via TKO in Round 2 at 4:11
- Kevin Casey vs. Elvis Mutapcic declared split draw
- Polo Reyes def. “Maestro” Dong Hyun Kim via knockout in Round 3 at 1:52